IDEATE Engineering Competition 2022:

Innovating the future of work

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IDEATE Competition

The SourceAmerica® IDEATE competition (formerly called the SourceAmerica Design Challenge) is a unique national engineering challenge. It invites motivated high school and college engineering students from across the country to innovate ways to improve workplace inclusion and opportunities for people with disabilities.

Imagine, Design & Evaluate Assistive Technologies for Employment

IDEATE 2022 gives students a competition with purpose: to create assistive technology that increases workplace success for people with disabilities. Student teams collaborate with a person with a disability in their community to evaluate a need and develop an innovative solution that makes a real difference. What makes IDEATE more unique: judging is based on demonstrable results, not technological sophistication. The winning projects solve challenges in the workplace and increase the earning potential of people with disabilities, through scalable and repeatable inventions that can be used across the country.


We’re looking for engineering students ready to make a meaningful difference. 

IDEATE 2022 gives you the opportunity to pioneer workplace technology in collaboration with a person with disabilities. 

This is an engineering competition that rewards you for being curious, imaginative, detail-oriented, and collaborative. The winning technologies are created in a team environment that includes people with disabilities, and are awarded by how effectively they increase opportunities and innovate the workplace. Get ready to expand your perspective and transform the future of employment.

Why should I participate IDEATE 2022?
Will I be working with people in the community?
What defines a team?
How does our team decide which project to submit?
How much does it cost to participate in IDEATE 2022?

Your students can change the workplace. Starting here.

IDEATE 2022 is a life-changing challenge that inspires your students to push boundaries.

The SourceAmerica® IDEATE engineering competition celebrates the pursuit of innovative thinking that has real-world implications. It combines an authentic, hands-on learning experience that uses STEM skills and ties directly to the community. It connects your students with people with disabilities to solve workplace challenges in exciting new ways. IDEATE is an opportunity for your students to challenge themselves to profoundly improve workplace inclusion and earning potential for people with disabilities.

What differentiates IDEATE from other student engineering competitions?
How much does it cost to participate in IDEATE 2022?
Is IDEATE a well-established competition?
How can the program be used in a school setting?
How does IDEATE coordinate with established engineering and science criteria?
What is the framework for success?

Help us by finding the next great engineers from your school by taking the first step:

2021 Winning Innovations

Team 3002 Zeno Effect

First Place College:

California State University, Los Angeles, and the National Taipei University of Technology

California State University, Los Angeles, and the National Taipei University of Technology project team designed a web-based data tracking platform that increases efficiency in the assembly process for employees with disabilities and helps managers spot areas needing attention.

SourceAmerica: Zip Bag

First Place High School:

The Catlin Gabel School, Portland, OR

The Catlin Gabel team and On-the-Move PDX built a Ziploc bag opening and closing device called ZipBag—a safe and easy way for people with limb differences and lower dexterity to handle resealable bags. Utilizing foot pedals and a simple design, ZipBag requires the use of only one hand and a minimal amount of fine motor skills to operate.


Ready to Get Started?

Let us know you're interested by completing the form below. From there, we'll provide you with the information you need to take the next steps and register your team.

Interested as an Educator? All educators will receive helpful information to share with their students to inspire them to get involved.